At first glance, the Maine Coon can seem large and intimidating. Some Maine Coons can grow up to 25lbs, the size of a small bobcat. However, beneath their fierce complexion, the Maine Coon is one of the sweetest and most endearing companions you can have in your home, which is one of the reasons why they’re so popular.
Some say they’re quirky, while others say they’re just downright lovable. This guide will provide you with all you need to know about Maine Coon behavior.
Maine Coons are the Dogs of the Cat World
If you’ve ever felt conflicted between whether to get a dog or cat, look no further, for the Maine Coon is both! Maine Coons are known for being incredibly social and loyal, they love human interaction and will form a tight bond with their owners. They’ll show interest in what you’re doing and love being by your side. They might even greet you at the door!
They also typically like strangers, and don’t mind joining in on the party when guests are over. This is particularly unusual for cats as most don’t like being around people they don’t know.
Like many dogs, Maine Coons can typically get along well with other pets and children. Some owners have even been able to train them and can take them outside on a leash!
The Language of the Maine Coon
Many Maine Coons will chirp and trill instead of meowing, and have a wider repertoire of sounds they make to communicate with their owners. A trill is a mixture of a meow and a purr, and is a sound they often make when they’re feeling happy.
Being a social cat, Maine Coons will sometimes have “conversations” with their human friends, responding to you with a variety of sounds that makes it feel like a real back-and-forth.
They’re chatty cats indeed, so if you like a real talkative cat, the Maine Coon is probably for you!
Maine Coons like Water
Strangely, a lot of Maine Coons like water, and won’t shy away from a shallow bathtub or running faucet. Some say that the Maine Coon got part of its name because it looks like a raccoon when it plays in water!
The Maine Coon’s water resistant undercoat plays an important role in helping them stay dry and warm around water. Some Maine Coons even enjoy going for a swim, how’s that for a cat!
Maine Coons are Very Intelligent
While most people like to claim their cats are super intelligent, Maine Coons really take the cake on this one. Many can be trained to recognize certain words and commands and will learn YOUR patterns of behavior. They can read into your tone of voice to know what mood you’re in and can tell scolding from playful tones.
One caveat to the Maine Coon’s intelligence is that they can get bored easily without enough stimulation. They do require a lot of interaction and play time, and can get into mischief if they don’t have enough stimulation.
Maine Coons are typically very playful, and seem to not have lot their affinity for chasing anything that might look like prey. You might hear your Maine Coon tearing about your home, leaping about on the furniture in pursuit of a toy or companion pet. Some owners have even reported playing chase with their Maine Coon, running across the room while their Maine Coon chases after them, and vice versa. They seem to understand and learn fairly complex game play quite quickly, and require a lot of it!
Maine Coons are Affectionate
One behavioral trait that makes Maine Coons so popular for families is their affectionate nature. They’re natural lovers that seek cuddles and loving interaction from their owners. Don’t be surprised if your Maine Coon likes to take naps with you curled up in the nook behind your legs or plants themselves in the middle of your lap.
They will demand attention if they don’t get enough of it, so make sure to carve out some quality time with your Maine Coon.
Maine Coons are called the “gentle giants” of the cat world because in spite of their large and intimidating appearance, they really are sweet and gentle underneath. Perhaps one of the reasons they get along so well with other people and pets is because they’re so benevolent and patient.
Environmental Factors that Affect Maine Coon Behavior
Like any cat, a Maine Coon’s behavior will be affected by the environment they grew up in and they one they currently live in. Cats are imprinted on as kittens, and an abusive, neglectful or threatening environment will teach a kitten to not trust or to be aggressive. On a milder note, anything could affect how a kitten behaves as an adult. For example, one bad experience with water might prompt a kitten to avoid water as an adult.
Similarly, a Maine Coon’s current environment will affect how they behave, and they might exhibit behaviors that are outside the norm for their breed. For example, having too few toys and stimulation might cause them to act desperately needy when people are around, and even aggressively needy at times. Having another pet around that’s aggressive or dominant might cause a Maine Coon to be fearful or aggressive themselves.
Maine Coon’s will also at differently when they’re sick or unwell, so strange behavior that comes about randomly could be reason for a visit to the veterinarian.